Monday, April 23, 2007

Putin's Legacy in the Face of Yeltsin's Death

Kommersant, one of the most influential Russian newspapers reporting on Boris Yeltsin's legacy has contrasted it with that of President Putin:

Vladimir Putin in his seven years as president has proved that a return to the past is possible: nationwide elections of governors were cancelled, rules of elections into the Lower House of Parliament were tightened, many rights of ordinary Russians were limited, practically all media networks were transferred to the government. Many opposition leaders believe Yeltsin's appointment of Vladimir Putin as his successor was the biggest mistake of the first president. But Boris Yeltsin has never admitted this. At least publicly.

This is one of the biggest open criticisms of President Putin in the media (outside of opposition newspapers and radio stations) thus far. Kommersant's Kremlin correspondent Andrey Kolesnikov wrote that Vladimir Putin should be held accountable for the liberties that Boris Yeltsin created that were later diminished.

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